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Mon May 18, 2020, 07:54 AM

Guardian - No Coal Recovery Post-COVID; USEIA - Coal Could Fall To 10% Of US Generation w/i 5 Years


Even before the pandemic, the industry was under pressure due to heightened climate activism, divestment campaigns and cheap alternatives. The lockdown has exposed its frailties even further, wiping billions from the market valuations of the world’s biggest coal miners. As demand for electricity has fallen, many utilities have cut back on coal first, because it is more expensive than gas, wind and solar. In the EU imports of coal for thermal power plants plunged by almost two-thirds in recent months to reach lows not seen in 30 years. The consequences have been felt around the world as well.

This week, a new report by the US Energy Information Administration projected the US would produce more electricity this year from renewables than from coal for the first time. Industry analysts predict coal’s share of US electricity generation could fall to just 10% in five years, down from 50% a decade ago. Despite Donald Trump’s campaign pledge to “dig coal”, there are now more job losses and closures in the industry than at any time since Eisenhower’s presidency 60 years ago. Among the latest has been Great River Energy’s plan to shut down a 1.1-gigawatt thermal plant in North Dakota and replace it with wind and gas.

Rob Jackson, the chair of Global Carbon Project, said the pandemic was likely to confirm that coal will never again reach the global peak seen in 2013: “Covid-19 will slash coal emissions so much this year that the industry will never recover, even with a continued build-out in India and elsewhere. The crash in natural gas prices, record-cheap solar and wind power, and climate and health concerns have undercut the industry permanently.”

Records are falling thick and fast. By Friday, the UK national grid had not burned a single lump of coal for 35 days, the longest uninterrupted period since the start of the industrial revolution more than 230 years ago. In Portugal, the record coal-free run has extended almost two months, the campaign group Europe Beyond Coal recently reported.



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Reply Guardian - No Coal Recovery Post-COVID; USEIA - Coal Could Fall To 10% Of US Generation w/i 5 Years (Original post)
hatrack May 18 OP
Squinch May 18 #1

Response to hatrack (Original post)

Mon May 18, 2020, 08:23 AM

1. That's great news. Now will the coal industry use those 5 years to re-tool and convert

the coal jobs into something else, something much better, as Hillary had planned to do for them?

Or will they grow their beards, grab their penile-replacement guns and march around yelling about what they are owed and screaming that the loss of obsolete coal jobs is an affront to their libertee?

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